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Digital Subscriptions > DNA Magazine > DNA #229 - Travel Issue > SECRETLY ENCHANTING

SECRETLY ENCHANTING

A decade after the end of its bloody civil war, Sri Lanka is open to tourists again. As a previously hidden, if not forbidden, gay community spreads its wings, this “wonder of Asia” grapples with its political identity.

LARGER-THAN-LIFE PINK BUDDHAS, frisky full-feathered peacocks, undisturbed sandy beaches and a kind, smiling people who are relieved that their civil war is over and the tsunami is now just a memory – Sri Lanka is, rightly, an awakening Asian infatuation. The former British colony, known as Ceylon before gaining independence in 1948, is nestled at the bottom of the Indian subcontinent between the Bay Of Bengal and the Arabian Sea. A strategic part of the ancient Spice Route, now a modern gateway into Asia, Sri Lanka turned towards socialism in the 1960s before steadying course to become a modern republic in the capitalist mold in 1972.

But just as the country was resuming its previous colonial incarnation as a luxury travel destination, a civil war broke out between the majority Buddhist Sinhalese and the country’s Tamil Hindu and Christian minority in the early 1980s. It’s estimated that between 60,000 to 100,000 people perished over three decades of bloody violence.

The 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami brought another crushing blow, killing 35,000 people across Sri Lanka, making it the second worse affected country after Indonesia.

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He’s big, he’s bi and he’s beautiful. Meet Moscovit Konstantin Kamynin, our latest cover man. Find out why he changed his name, what he thinks of LGBT life in Moscow, and why Verdi, Mozart and Puccini drive him crazy! Oh, and see sexy semi-naked pictures of him by Serge Lee! Want more men? We have a “sweet” 6-page shoot of power blond Arthur by Stas Vokman, and another 8 pages of super-studly Zac by Joseph Vumbaco. Also in this issue, we meet NASA’s sexy space daddy, scientist Troy Lee Hudson. Not only is he helping us explore Mars, he’s waving the flag for the leather and fetish community – and being hot while he’s about it. Our Straight Mate this month is spunky Aussie comedian Tim Ferguson. His MS is certainly not slowing him down as he embarks on his A Fast Life On Wheels tour. Porn star pocket rocket Armond Rizzo has stacks to say about sex-on-screen and the Trump administration – either way, he’s fudged! While you’re down there, sex columnist Cameron McCool answers some intimate bedroom questions from our readers. Pack your bags – we head to Sri Lanka for Pride and discover the country’s burgeoning LGBT scene, and we name 15 Freaky Things To Do In London. Yes, we jumped off the red bus and went in search of the kooky and the crazy. Feel like getting away from it all – including your addictions? A Day In The Life looks inside R12, an LGBT-specific recovery facility in Thailand. In Music we review the latest from Dolly Parton, Rita Ora, Travis Scott and Adam Devonport, plus meet emerging artist Andrea (he’s gender fluid) and rising Kiwi stars, Alae. Plus, plenty more music, theatre and arts and all your favourite regulars. Download now to enjoy!